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Our Family Trip To Bar Harbor 2017

Eva Amurri Martino, Kyle Martin, and Marlowe and Major Martino stand together in front of a lake in Bar Harbor, Maine

Our family trip to Maine this year was extra special– it was our first year visiting our lake house as a completed family of four! Our home on Mount Desert Island (right by Bar Harbor) has been in our family for decades– my Grandfather lived there from when he retired until he passed away.  After he passed, my Mom renovated the cabin to update it, expand within the constraints of the property footprint, and arrange the layout to make it optimal for everyone in our family to continue visiting for generations to come. (Just not at the same time– it’s not nearly big enough! LOL)  I have over 35 cousins (and counting!) and we all take turns signing up for time to visit the property.  I love visiting towards the end of the summer, when the lake is nice and warm (enough) to swim in, and the daily weather isn’t too cool to spend the days outdoors.

Kyle Martino horses around with his two small children Marlowe and Major at their lake house in Maine

Kyle Martino horses around with his two small children Marlowe and Major at their lake house in Maine

Kyle Martino horses around with his two small children Marlowe and Major at their lake house in Maine

Kyle Martino horses around with his two small children Marlowe and Major at their lake house in Maine

Major Martino sits in a portable high chair

Eva Amurri Martino relaxes on patterned cushions in the window seat of her lake house in Maine

Last year during our trip, I was seven months pregnant with Major.  At the time, I remember sensing how much he loved being at the house and in Maine– and this year it was remarkable to see how much that was truly the case! He seemed to adore our time there more than any of us.  He just loves being outside, and he would get so calm watching the lake and being surrounded by trees. It was amazing to see both of our kids in that house, and know that they will be visiting the same place for years to come.  The very same property that I have been lucky enough to spend my summers visiting since I was a child as well!  I love a meaningful tradition!

Marlowe Martino wades out in to the water in Long Pond on Mount Desert Island in Maine

Kyle Martino stands in the lake surrounded by trees

Eva Amurri Martino paddles out on the lake with Marlowe on her paddle board

Eva Amurri Martino paddles out on the lake with Marlowe on her paddle board

Eva Amurri Martino paddles out on the lake with Marlowe on her paddle board

Eva Amurri Martino paddles out on the lake with Marlowe on her paddle board

Eva Amurri Martino paddles out on the lake with Marlowe on her paddle board

Our days were pretty chill while in Maine.  We would normally wake up early and make a big breakfast, and then sometimes if the weather was good Kyle and I would go out on the lake for a little early morning Paddleboard workout.  I usually got a little blonde stowaway on my Paddleboard. Ha!  I love the mornings on the lake because the water is so still and clear– you can see all the way to the bottom, and it’s easy to paddle long distances really quickly and easily without too many boaters around.  Then, when we got back the whole family would go out on an adventure!

Eva Amurri Martino and Marlowe Martino set off on a hike in Acadia National park

Marlowe Martino hikes in Acadia National Park

Marlowe Martino hikes along the scenic cliffs in Acadia National park

Kyle Martino holds Major Martino in a baby carrier on a hike in Maine

Kyle, Eva, Marlowe, and Major Martino pause at a scenic overlook while on a hike in Bar Harbor Maine

Kyle, Eva, Marlowe, and Major Martino pause at a scenic overlook while on a hike in Bar Harbor Maine

Kyle, Eva, Marlowe, and Major Martino pause at a scenic overlook while on a hike in Bar Harbor Maine

We did some absolutely gorgeous hikes while in Bar Harbor area.  Acadia National Park is huge (obviously) and there are tons of fun hikes that are pretty doable with kids.  We would normally pick one that was around two miles, and pack snacks and water.  There were always wild blueberry bushes on the trials to nibble from when we needed a bit of a break and a snack, too! I was absolutely amazed by the natural beauty of Maine, and almost equally amazed by how down for the adventure Marlowe ALWAYS was on the trail.  She hiked on her own the entire time, and was always the first one bounding up the stairs or rocks or hills.  It makes me really happy that we can all exercise and explore together as a family– and I can’t wait until the kids are a little older and we can go on more complicated adventures.

Eva Amurri Martino holds Major Martino in a baby carrier, and holds Marlowe Martino's hand on a hike in Acadia National Park

Marlowe Martino picks blueberries on a trail in Maine

Marlowe Martino picks blueberries on a trail in Maine

Kyle Martino hikes with two year old daughter Marlowe on a trail in Acadia National Park

Kyle Martino hikes with two year old daughter Marlowe on a trail in Acadia National Park

Kyle Martino hikes with two year old daughter Marlowe on a trail in Acadia National Park

Kyle Martino points out some scenery in the distance to two year old daughter Marlowe

Eva Amurri Martino dons workout gear and hikes the cliff trails of Acadia National Park with two year old daughter Marlowe

Eva Amurri Martino dons workout gear and hikes the cliff trails of Acadia National Park with two year old daughter Marlowe

After Major’s morning naps, we liked to go explore town in the afternoons. Bar Harbor town is so cute and quaint– but with the awesome addition of having great restaurants and bars added in.  It’s like the best of all worlds.  We usually shopped around a little bit, exploring the town square and playgrounds– and ended our afternoon with an ice cream cone.  We’ve tried every parlour at this point, but our favorite is Mount Desert Ice Cream! Their flavors are really inventive and yummy.  Marlowe’s go-to is their hand-churned Strawberry ice cream.

Marlowe Martino plays on the green in downtown Bar Harbor

Eva Amurri Martino leans in for a kiss with two year old daughter, Marlowe, on the green in downtown Bar Harbor, ME

Marlowe Martino eats a cup of fresh strawberry ice cream, wearing a flowered summer dress

Marlowe Martino eats a cup of fresh strawberry ice cream, wearing a flowered summer dress

Eva Amurri Martino crosses a scenic bridge in Bar Harbor Maine, with 9 month old son Major on her hip

Eva Amurri Martino embraces 9 month old son, Major

Eva Amurri Martino sits on a bench with daughter marlowe and son Major in Bar Harbor Maine

Eva Amurri Martino sits on a bench with daughter marlowe and son Major in Bar Harbor Maine

Major Martino sits in the grass surrounded by flowers in Bar Harbor Maine

Marlowe Martino leans in to kiss her baby brother Major on the grass in Bar Harbor Maine

Two year old Marlowe Martino embraces 9 month old brother Major on the grass in Bar Harbor, Maine

Bar Harbor is filled with farm stands and next-to-the-road dining and small businesses– but the one that stole our hearts was Beech Hill Farm.  They have a farm stand 5 days a week that is so fabulous, plus the farm itself is just magical! They are so sweet there, and were always game when Marlowe went around to explore.  Every year I pick up some canned goods and honeys to take home as a little souvenir of our trip.  My favorite this year was a jar of pickled fiddlehead ferns!

Eva Amurri Martino picks up some produce at the farm stand at Beech Hill Farm in Maine

Colorful fresh produce at Beech Hill Farm in Maine

Colorful produce at Beech Hill Farm in Maine

Eva Amurri Martino picks up some produce at the farm stand at Beech Hill Farm in Maine

Marlowe Martino collects a basket of produce at Beech Hill Farm in Maine

Marlowe Martino plays with a dog at Beech Hill Farm in Maine

Marlowe Martino plays with a dog at Beech Hill Farm in Maine

Marlowe Martino wears a striped jumpsuit and stands in the garden at Beech Hill Farm in Maine

Marlowe Martino wears a striped jumpsuit and stands in the garden at Beech Hill Farm in Maine

Marlowe walks through the gardens at Beech HIll Farm in Maine

Generally, when we travel as a family our trips are all about the food! LOL.  We ate at some great places (stay tuned below for a list of my faves), a few of which have been in rotation since I was a little kid.  I’m a HUGE lobster fan– lobster rolls for sure, but full steamed Lobster dinners in particular.  Marlowe even tried a lobster roll for the first time this year! I don’t think she’s quite made the connection between the real, live lobsters that she loves petting and the food version though!

Kyle Martino and daughter Marlowe stand in front of a wall of multicolored buoys in downtown Bar Harbor, ME

Marlowe and Major Martino sit in the stroller through downtown Bar Harbor while eating ice cream cones

It seemed liked everywhere we went in the Bar Harbor area there was an opportunity to explore and learn.  One afternoon, it was drizzling all morning.  Finally at lunch time, we had enough of entertaining the kids in the house (my cousin was also visiting with his three year old) so we decided to go in to town to eat and get a change of scenery.  On the way, we suddenly started driving by a gorgeous and totally deserted beach! It was still dreary out but had stopped drizzling for a few moments.  I convinced Kyle to pull over and we all got out to explore.  I’m so glad we did because it turned out to be one of my favorite moments of the trip! We found so many cool tidal pools, and could show and teach the kids about different fish and animals.  Marlowe loved finding things to toss in the pools, of course.  The girl loves a splash! LOL.

Eva Amurri Martino walks on a pebble beach with daughter Marlowe in the Bar Harbor Area of Maine

 Marlowe Martino wears a pink raincoat and walk on the beach in the Bar Harbor Area of Maine

Eva Amurri Martino explores tidal pools with two year old daughter Marlowe on the beach in Maine

Eva Amurri Martino explores tidal pools with two year old daughter Marlowe on the beach in Maine

Eva Amurri Martino explores tidal pools with two year old daughter Marlowe on the beach in Maine

Eva Amurri Martino finds a tiny crab in a tidal pool on the beach in Maine

Eva Amurri Martino laughs and looks on as daughter Marlowe plays in the tidal pools on the beach in Maine

Eva Amurri Martino laughs and looks on as daughter Marlowe plays in the tidal pools on the beach in Maine

Eva Amurri Martino laughs and looks on as daughter Marlowe plays in the tidal pools on the beach in Maine

Overall, the trip was really regenerative.  I think we all needed a bit of time away from work and technology to just be together and connect with our environment.  Since I’ve become a Mom, I’ve found that my favorite trips are the ones where it feels ok to move at a slower pace and really allow our moods to dictate what we feel like doing.  I love Maine for this because there are so many ways to explore the area, and when you just get outside you end up being so entertained.  It’s nice to breathe in some truly fresh air every once in a while, too! While traveling with kids is always exhausting no matter what (helloooo), I’m so glad we have been continuing my family tradition year after year.  The picture of Kyle and Lowie in front of the buoy wall is an exact replica of one we took last year (see the album here), and I can’t wait to create even more photographic markers as the years go on. It’s crazy to see how much bigger she is in just 12 short months, and I can’t even imagine where Major will be developmentally by next Summer! Paddling on a paddle board? LOL.  We will see you next year, Bar Harbor!

Marlowe Martino lays on a bean bag wearing Lobster pajamas

Marlowe and Major Martino wear matching lobster pajamas

 

My favorite food…

  • Beech Hill Farm
  • Stewman’s Downtown
  • Thurston’s Lobster Pound
  • Blaze
  • Havana
  • Mount Desert Ice Cream
  • Isleford Dock Restaurant & Gallery

My favorite shops…

  • Fair Trade Winds
  • Cool As A Moose
  • Spruce + Gussy
  • The Chocolate Moose

 

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7 Comments

  1. Emily M. says:

    Thank you for sharing a glimpse into your memory making! When I saw the pics and the story about pulling over to explore the tide pools it was like a punch to the gut of nostalgia and sweet memories! Growing up we spent many summers in Norway where my fam is from and my parents did the exact same thing – pulled over suddenly during a road trip to explore a beach at low tide – and it was thee best part of the trip!
    XO, Emily

    08.07.17Reply
  2. Glenda says:

    Love all the pics. I totally love a good tradition as well. Thanks for allowing us to follow you. M & M are the cutest!

    08.07.17Reply
  3. britt says:

    Would you mind sharing the specific trails you did with the kiddos? We also go to BH every year and have a 3 year old. We’ve only done the trail along the ocean downtown and the one along thunderhole with him. (did Jordan Pond but was a little dicey with all the ramps) I’d love to know of an easy one that brings you to a great look out like your pictures. Even if it wasn’t truly the “top” of the mountain… he’d never know 😉

    08.07.17Reply
  4. Erin R. says:

    Marlowe’s hair is so long compared to last year! 😱 Girl has got some lovely locks. The pictures are adorable and I love the matching lobster pj’s! Too cute. Glad you guys had such a great time!

    08.07.17Reply
  5. Mary says:

    You all look amazing!!! Marlowe is so beautiful, Major takes the most adorable little expressions (like that one on the wooden bench!) and you two seem like a genuinely happy and compatible couple.Until I reached the final paragraph (where you admit that kids and holidays can be exhausting) I kept thinking that I must be doing something wrong in my family vacation and not have tons of chilling and relaxing moments.On the contrary I pretty much felt sooo exhausted and on the run constantly before or after our visits to the sea, to prepare food for my wonderful and veery energetic 18 months old son, give real battles in order to change a diaper, put on the bathing suit, run behind him so that he will not fall or bring everything down!
    Not to mention those unexpected tantrums!!! My husband helped but you know it is always more work for mamas.Of course there were also some truly unforgettable and sweet times that I am glad we experienced. Please give us some advise about how you do cope with the exhausting part of the holidays with kids, how you manage to have some time alone with your husband and also give us tips regarding the food for the kids while in holidays, what do you feed them especially when they are not totally capable of eating exactly what the parents eat. Sorry for the long comment, I will be thrilled to have a reply from you on any of those matters!!!

    08.07.17Reply
  6. Beautiful pictures,thank you for sharing Eva,looks like paradise,i am glad you guys had fun

    08.07.17Reply
  7. Tory says:

    I loved reading this post, but it also made me so sad as well. My husband’s family had a house in Maine on Roxbury Pond for over 30 years. My husband and his family spent every summer there during his childhood and into his adult life. I was even able to go a few summers and it is one of my favorite places. Sadly, last summer his uncle, who inherited the house when his grandmother died, decided to sell it. They told us their plans of selling the house two weeks before our wedding, and unfortunately, we were not in a position to be able to buy them out. We also were not able to make it up to Maine last summer because of our wedding and honeymoon so my husband hadn’t been there since August of 2015. The property sold in October. This summer has been really hard on my husband because I know he is missing our yearly Maine adventure. I truly hope one day that we are able to buy a lake house in Maine and start that family tradition again. For now, I will live vicariously through your yearly Maine adventures. You all looked like you had such an amazing time! Thank you for sharing it with us.

    08.09.17Reply